Oil Pulling for Oral Hygiene
Oil pulling is something that I have turned many of my friends and customers on to since I discovered it a couple of years ago. While it may be a new thing for me personally, it is actually an ancient Ayurvedic (traditional Hindu medicine) practice dating back over 3,000 years.
What is Oil Pulling?
Oil pulling is a practice in which one places a few tablespoons of oil in the mouth and "pull" it between the teeth. The swishing and pulling helps to remove toxins from the mouth, the teeth, and potentially the blood stream. The idea here is that by pushing and pulling the oil into every space in your mouth, it can bond to any bacteria and remove it. When you spit out the oil, the bacteria goes with it.
How to Pull Oil
From the research I have done, the most commonly used oil for pulling is coconut oil, so that's what I use!
What you'll need:
- 1-2 tbsp. Coconut Oil
- Tea Tree Oil (Optional)
- Peppermint Essential Oil (Optional)
Personally, I like to melt the coconut oil prior to pulling, but I know some who scoop it right from the container solid. I find that the entire process is easier to deal with if the oil is pre-melted.
Begin by melting 1-2 tbsp. coconut oil in a small container. Add 1-2 drops each of tea tree oil and peppermint oil (this step is optional, but adds antibacterial & antimicrobial properties, plus it tastes good). Put the oil in your mouth, and begin swishing. You want to force the oil between your teeth, into your cheeks, and anywhere you can get it. Do not swallow the oil! This is incredibly important since the oil contains all of the bacteria and toxins that were previously in the mouth. The oil will become cloudy, and thin as you pull. The goal is to continue pulling for 20 minutes, but in the beginning this is hard to accomplish. Start with a shorter amount of time and work your way up. When you are done, spit all of the oil out. I usually spit into the trash can, rather than down the sink, to avoid excessive organic buildup in my drains.
Benefits of Oil Pulling
There are many noted benefits of oil pulling, though it is important to note that none of these claims have been approved by the FDA, nor have they been scientifically proven. Ancient Ayurvedic medicinal texts list over 30 conditions that can be treated by pulling oil!
Some benefits that I have seen:
- Helps prevent and potentially reverse tooth decay and cavities
- Strengthens the immune system
- Prevents chapped lips
- Increased energy
- Aids in keeping breath fresh
- Reduces the frequency of headaches
Do you keep to an oil pulling routine? Let us know what it has done for you in the comments below!